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Fareed Zakaria GPS

News/Business. Foreign affairs and policies shaping the world.

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CNN

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01:00:00

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San Francisco, CA, USA

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mpeg2video

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ac3

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1920

PIXEL HEIGHT
1080

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China 20, United States 13, Israel 8, America 7, Romney 7, Us 6, Beijing 5, Italy 5, Europe 5, Malibu 5, Sean Wilentz 4, Neutrogena 4, New York 4, Obama 4, Rula 3, Ronald Reagan 3, Walter Isaacson 3, Lyndon Johnson 3, Edmund Morris 3, Kishore 3,
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  CNN    Fareed Zakaria GPS    News/Business. Foreign affairs  
   and policies shaping the world.  

    November 4, 2012
    10:00 - 11:00am PST  

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this is gps, the global public square. welcome to all of you in the united states and around the world. i'm fareed zakaria. in two days america will pick its president for the next four years. we'll take two different looks at this moment in time. first a global perspective. we've assembled experts from europe, middle east, and asia to tell us how the rest of the world sees this election. then i have a panel of distinguished historians, walter isaacson, sean wilentz, and edmund morris to look at an eye to the past. what do past campaigns and past presidents tell us about this nail-biter? also americans might be anxious to learn tuesday's results, but the chinese are even more
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anxious, perhaps, to learn who their new leaders will be, why they might have more at stake than we do. but first here's my take. whoever wins the election on tuesday, on wednesday either barack obama or mitt romney will have to start worrying about the same urgent challenge, how to stop the united states from falling over the fiscal cliff. this is, of course, the second cliff hanger that the united states has faced in two years, the first being the debt ceiling debacle. how did the world's greatest democracy start functioning so badly? maybe the next president can try to fix this broader problem. but first the fiscal cliff. unless congress acts, the spending cuts and tack increases that would be triggered automatically next january would take 5.1% out of the country's gdp in one year according to the congressional budget office. that would be one of the most severe experiments with austerity in history, larger
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than anything greece, spain, italy, or the united kingdom has tried. in fact, it's almost three times the size of britain's austerity program. and the results of those european programs have thus far been a dramatic slowdown in economic growth and a sharp spike in unemployment. once again, the rest of the world watches to see if the united states, the center of the global economy, will actually commit economic suicide. the most puzzling aspect of our dilemmas is how manageable they are. unlike greece or spain or even britain, the united states has a fundamentally healthy economy. we have problems, but we have solutions to them. the true virtue of the simpson-bowles deficit reduction plan is that it illustrates that the united states' debt problem can be readily resolved as long as both parties compromise. the truth is most of america's problems could be solved using some version of the simpson-bowles approach. imagine a bipartisan and independent panel that proposed
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comprehensive immigration reform or social security reform or tax reform. perhaps we need an independent agency chartered with recovery to generate such plans when asked. the american system is simply not working. the parties have become too polarized. institutions and traditions have been abused to create permanent gridlock and it's attempting to pretend this has always been part of the country's raucous democracy and both parties are to blame, but that's just not true. consider these facts. over the past five years, republicans in the senate have threatened or used a filibuster 385 times. that is almost double the rate of the preceding five years and much more than the historic average. now, would obama or romney be better at breaking this deadlock? each side make its arguments. obama has recently said that his re-election would break the fever and force republicans to the bargaining table. romney partisans quietly admit
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that the republican party will have to accept higher taxes but they claim only one of its own can take them there. is either scenario credible? i'm not sure. so far, obama has been more willing to compromise, though he's not blameless. maybe the republican parties could accept reality and mathematics and recognize that tact revenues will have to go up to get a budget deal. but wu thing i am sure of, unless we fix our utterly dysfunctional political system, it is only a matter of time before we will face the next cliff and that next time we will fall off and crash. for more on this you can read my column in this week's "time" magazine. let's get started. ♪ in a couple of days we'll have a verdict from the american
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people, who we want to run this country. but what about the rest of the world? i have a great global panel from singapore, kishore mahbubani, from paris, dominique, france's great public intellectuals. in tel a viv, he's a senior correspondent and here in new york we have rula. she has both israeli and italian citizenship and she has lived and worked as a writer and journalist in both countries. dominique, let me start with you. france had a great love affair with barack obama. has it continued? do the french -- are the french still overwhelmingly obama? >> definitely, but i think for different reasons. in 2008 the french would have voted for obama out of hope. in 2012, they would still vote
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in the huge majority for obama, but more out of fear of a romney victory and of a return of an america they used to dislike. >> kishore, in asia, republicans have generally been quite popular, they've been regarded as pro-free trade, hard-headed. if you think of ronald reagan and george bush sr., clearly the asians, certainly asian elites preferred them. what's the mood right now among asia's elite? >> well, let me emphasize one point. both romney and obama will be acceptable to the asians. you know, the day that both are very careful, pragmatic souls. romney has surged to the center after he got the republican nomination, and you're right, in general republicans have done
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very well in asia. at the same time to be absolutely accurate, there's no doubt there's a clear preference for obama in the region. how many presidents do you know have spent their childhood in asia. especially like indonesia, how many speak the asian and have a sensitivity that obama has. so i guess the clear preference, too, would be for obama over romney. >> the one country, i mean if you had a survey in which they asked countries whom you'd prefer, i think all the countries were polled. except one that preferred obama, that one country was pakistan, which i assume thinks it will have fewer drone attacks if romney is president, which i think may be a mistaken assumption. one place not polled that would also be possibly true, israel. would you say in israel romney would be preferred to obama? >> it's not that simple. i think they're just as divided.
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it's absolutely true that the israeli right, i would say large chunk of the center fear president obama and therefore would support romney not because of enthusiasm but because of the very bad relationship between the israeli right and the israeli right-winged government and the obama administration. but i think the israeli center left now identifies with obama and would like to see an obama victory and actually that will influence the election campaign in israel. we have several players who are waiting to see the result of the american elections and therefore the israeli center left and definitely left actually supports obama, which was not the case when obama began his tenure because at the time, really most of israel had reservations about him. i would say he became much more popular with the left and left
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of center where the right sees him in almost in demonic terms. >> you have multiple identities. you're an arab-israeli. the second, you're a news anchor in italy, so steeped in that european culture. how does it strike you? >> well, if you think of europe, definitely europe is pro obama. i mean, they're seeing how pragmatic he was. i mean we also took out of the way of this right-winged way of speaking, being tough with the world, insulting everybody no matter what, with them or with us or against us. let's remember. unilateral intervention. the world also disliked abu ghraib, guantanamo bay, invasion of iraq. i mean, obama stepped in and actually embraced the arab spring. let's remember that. >> ari, you said you interviewed
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romney and you said you found him to be a man of tremendous warmth, a very flattering profile. do you think that there is a -- is the support that exists within israel for him because he's a wonderful person or because you just think at the end of the day he'd support israel more strongly? >> first of all, he didn't share your view. the romney people did not think that the interview was flattering at all as it had some reservations about his charisma and strength of his personality. it's true what came across in the interview is something the americans saw in the debates which is that the man is no demon and, no, he's not nothing, and that was a very interesting experience to see that there was a certain exaggeration in the way he was perceiving the criticism of romney and once meeting him you could see that. i think that romney's failure isn't projecting a clear message and real strength, and there was
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something vague just like on the american policy. there was something vague and not very powerful regarding his statements about the middle east and the burning issue of iran and all that. so what you have in israel is more of -- it's all about obama actually. it's not about romney. there are those who really fear obama and there are those who -- and therefore they support romney, while the others actually fear that the romney victory will strengthen the israeli right and deteriorate things in the region. >> we're going to have to ta take a break. when we come back, we're going to learn what do the chinese think of barack obama and mitt romney when we come back. [ male announcer ] citi turns 200 this year. in that time there've been some good days.
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at meineke i have options... like oil changes starting at $19.95. my money. my choice. my meineke. we're back with our global panel. rula jebreal, kishore mahbubani, dominique moisi, and ari shavit. kishore, china is on the verge of its own leadership change. do they have time in the midst of this very dramatic change to think about who would be a better president for them? how do you think the chinese look at the succession because this is going to be the most important bilateral relationship in the world in some ways. >> you're right by the way. there's some things very strange happening in china right now in the midst of this transition in china.
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people expected it to go much more smoothly than it has, and i'm sure they're very internally preoccupied. but the dust was settled. the chinese have kind of a very strange paradoxical concern about the united states. on the one hand they don't want to have a china -- america that's too strong, too aggressive, pushing china in a specific region the way it could as china has seen in other places. at the same time, the chinese also realize that an american that is weakened too much is that is weakened too much is also bad for them because, i mean, the chinese at the end of the day want a strong global economy and they want a lead their will bring america together and strengthen it again. so you have a strong america leading a strong global economy. so no matter who comes in, whether it's obama or romney -- in the case of romney, it will take one to two years for the dust to settle down.
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u.s., china relationship will come back an eventually stabilize because it's in the interest of both sides to keep a stable relationship. >> dominique, when you look at the european crisis, what i'm struck at is this may be the major international crisis where united states is really something of a bystander. it's not really involved much. it's involved on the margins. do europeans, is this part of the world? do europeans like this? do they wish the united states were more involved or are they thinking, you know what, we have the mechanisms to handle this and we're glad the obama administration is staying out? >> well, i think the europeans are witnessing the change, and it's not a question or liking it or disliking it. it's a reality. and from the standpoint, i think the europeans a bit like the chinese would say obama or
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romney, by the end of the day, it may not make such a big difference either on foreign policy or even in economic policy. but by the end of the day, the europeans support obama, i would say not because of his performance, not because they think he will do something very different but because intuitively in terms of emotion and values, they feel much closer to him. >> rula, if you put your italian hat on, does it matter so much? because what i'm struck by when reading the italian press or watching the reports from italy, mario monti, the new prime minister is being much lauded for his very good relationship with angela merkel, the chancellor of germany. the fact that he has a good relationship with barack obama, it's at this point somewhat irrelevant because the crucial figure that italy has to get on
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with right now is germany, not the united states. is that the new europe? >> that's a little bit, yes. there's a little -- a lot, you know. germany has become a very powerful player. italy has $2.5 trillion in debt and they need angela merkel to support them. they can never bail them out, but in a way they can slow the repayment of the debt or help them in some kind of way, but i think also they're looking toward the federal reserve, what ben bernanke has been doing in the last few years and how he actually saved the economy in the united states while europe was still fumbling what to do and now they're following the same formula, same recipe that ben bernanke set up to bring america back. >> finally, ari shavit, let me ask you.
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about potential obama presidency. president obama gave an interview to a senior decision-maker but it was widely reported to be barack in which he mused about a romney presidency, he said, look, it may be more difficult for an obama presidency to attack iran militarily because any new president is going to have to tame some time before he can take such a major decision. he's going to have to get his new cabinet officials appointed, national security in place. therefore, it may not be such a good thing for israel if the clock really is ticking. do you share that view? >> what we have here -- i think in the last few years -- is a completely dysfunctional relationship between president obama and benjamin netanyahu. i would say president obama looked at netanyahu and saw newt gingrich, not a friendly prime
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minister of the country, and the prime minister looked at obama as charles degall, who betrayed it in 1967. both men cannot stand each other and they failed, failed in doing anything on the palestinian issue and they they failed partial partially on the iranian issue. should romney be elected, he will have less experience. we don't know how resolved he will have, and it will take him a long time to train the international legitimacy and american legitimacy to act forcefully against iran. therefore, should obama want to act assertively diplomacy, he will be in a much better position. but the question is, which is often in israel, will the new obama administration have that sort of resolve. >> thank you, folks. kishore, ari, rula, and dominique.
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thank you very much for joining us. fantastic panel. up next, "what in the world." why the real story next week isn't in washington. it's in beijing. we'll be right back. tdd#: 1-800-345-2550 let's talk about your old 401(k). tdd#: 1-800-345-2550 you know, the one that's been lying around. tdd#: 1-800-345-2550 tdd#: 1-800-345-2550 rollover your old 401(k) to a schwab ira, and we'll help you tdd#: 1-800-345-2550 find new ways to make your money work harder. tdd#: 1-800-345-2550 so if you're ready to teach your old 401(k) some new tricks... tdd#: 1-800-345-2550 tdd#: 1-800-345-2550 talk to chuck. tdd#: 1-800-345-2550 rollover your old 401(k) tdd#: 1-800-345-2550 to a schwab ira tdd#: 1-800-345-2550 and you can receive up to $600. tdd#: 1-800-345-2550 see schwab.com tdd#: 1-800-345-2550 for terms and conditions. tdd#: 1-800-345-2550 call, click or visit tdd#: 1-800-345-2550 to open an account today. good boy. to volunteer to help those in need. when a twinge of back pain surprises him. morning starts in high spirits, but there's a growing pain in his lower back. as lines grow longer, his pain continues to linger.
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we'rwith questions fromtump sombing elections.kies do you know where your polling place is? maybe somewhere around my house. mine's just, right over that way. well you can find out exactly where it is using bing elections. it's a good day for politics. which way do you lean politically? conservative. republican. well, using the bing news selector you can find news from whichever way you lean. (together) social on this side, financial. which party is currently predicted to win a majority in the senate? the republicans? would you make a bet on that?
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no. are you chicken?
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now for our "what in the world" segment. the most intriguing story next week might play out not in washington but thousands of miles away in beijing. why? well, consider this. we don't know who the next occupant of the white house will be but whoever it is, we have a pretty good estimate of his policies. on the other hand in china, we almost certainly know the identity of the next top leader. what we have no clue about is where he wants to take china. ♪ >> starting thursday beijing
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will pick a new generation of rulers, hundreds of new faces. until a few weeks ago, even the date of this transition was a secret. but come november 8th. a new set of leaders will take on backlog of problems. how these issues are dealt with will set the tone not just for china's 1.3 billion people but for the entire world. let's look at those problems under three basic categories, economics, politics, and foreign policy. we know that china's growth rate is slowing. in part that's because it's now a middle income company and it can't grow at 10% forever. it's not just the pace but the nature of the economy that's changing however. we tend to think of china's growth driven by exports and state investments but look at this. in blue, exports have steadily declined since 2005 as a share of growth in gdp. on the other hand, domestic consumption in red has risen
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steadily, accounts for more than half of china's overall growth. that means the internal chinese economy needs to be reformed and opened up to make it more productive. that's politically difficult. one big policy that cries out for reform is the one-child rule. china is getting old. in 1980, the median age was 22. now it's 35. by 2050, it will rise to 50. china's next leader will face not just an ageing population but one that is also completely imbalanced for gender. among children under 15, there are 117 boys for every 100 girls. is a social tinder box. another political development that struck me this year is the increasingly public display of anger. it is said there are more than 100 protests in china every day. many of these are demonstrations
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against the country's environmental pollution, but there's also an undercurrent of anger over what is seen as an increasingly corrupt ruling class. just look at the two biggest stories out of china this year. former governor was a rising star one year ago. today he's under criminal investigation for alleged corruption. and just a few days ago "the new york times" ran a story detailing how the premier's family is worth $3 billion. no matter ho thaw they try to hide or spin these stories, there's a sense of public outrage and it will need to be addressed. china has essentially put all big decisions on hold until this transition. maybe next week it will begin. finally, foreign policy challenges. we've witnessed an assertive and sometimes even belligerent china in the last two years.
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look at the ongoing territorial dispute not only with japan but similar ones throughout the pacific. will that change? how will beijing control a rise in nationalist pride and power? how will it ensure that the united states and china don't drift toward confrontation? that's challenge for leaders in beijing and also in washington. we'll be right back. up next, how the past informs the present and the future. a great panel of american historians on the election. need. machines, tools, people making stuff. companies have to invest in making things. infrastructure, construction, production. we need it now more than ever. chevron's putting more than $8 billion dollars back in the u.s. economy this year. in pipes, cement, steel, jobs, energy. we need to get the wheels turning. i'm p. making real things... for real. ...that make a real difference. ♪ oh, hey alex. just picking up some, brochures, posters
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try capzasin-hp. it penetrates deep to block pain signals for hours of relief. capzasin-hp. take the pain out of arthritis. hello, fredricka whitfield with a check of our top stories now. it is the final campaign blitz. president barack obama got support from former president bill clinton in new hampshire this morning. the president also has florida, ohio, colorado on his schedule. and mitt romney was in des moines, iowa this morning. later on today, he'll rally in ohio, pennsylvania, and virginia. stay with cnn. we'll have live coverage from the campaign trail all day. now for the latest on the superstorm, sandy. the storm is blamed for at least 111 deaths in the u.s. meantime shall as survivors try to recover, thousands of people still without power dealing with the cold now.
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forecasters say temperatures are expected to drop below freezing tonight and tomorrow evening. and sandwiches of comfort, we'll meet a lady making thousands to help out the victims. now back to fareed zakaria i can't gps. sometimes the best way to think about big events, elections, crises, wars, is to step back and learn what we can from the past. that's why i brought together three of my favorite historians do just that and to help us figure out how the past can inform the present in this election. my guests are edmund morris. he has a new book out called "this living hand." sean wilentz also has a book out about ronald reagan and his times and many others including bob dylan and his times, a professor at princeton university and walter isaacson, the author of biographies of everything from henry kissinger
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to steve jobs. to benjamin franklin. after katrina, you were a native of new orleans, you were appointed the vice chairman of the louisiana recovery authority and the job was to handle funds that were being disbursed by the federal government. in watching the rebuilding of new orleans and this whole process, what do you think that you learned that applies to what's going on now in new york and new jersey? >> three things. first of all, leadership matters. if you look at what's happening in new york and new jersey now organization view great leaders, michael bloomberg, deputy mayor bob steele, governor cuomo, governor chris christie. the president, obama, has been very involved. when we went through katrina, we were all back down in new orleans, it wasn't that strong of leadership. ray nagin was the mayor, sometimes not to be found. so i saw the importance of people who take charge and say i'm going to run into this crisis and i'm going to help
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solve it. secondly, it reminded us that we're all in the same boat together. this election is somewhat about the age-old tension between, all right, we're all individual freedom, you know, have our own liberty and we're responsible for ourselves or we're all in the same boat and we're responsible, too, for each other. and it reminds you when you have a hurricane, that no matter how successful you are, you're also part of a community and you're responsibility for the community. thirdly, it reminded me of the importance of innovation. after the storm in new orleans, for example, we reinvented the school system instead of just replicating the old school system. that's now had double digits, score gains for the past three years. so as i think rahm emanuel, to paraphrase him, never let a good hurricane go to waste. >> sean, taking up that second point, do you think that the fact of this hurricane will resonate more strongly to help president obama in the election
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because it does suggest, you know, that you need government. >> sure. >> that it acts and protects communities and things like that. >> it helps with the whole way of thinking about the government and what it can do for people and fema, for example. republicans have not been in favor of making fema robust. the democrats have. natural disasters actually hurt two republican presidents very badly. both george h.w. bush with hurricane andrew and katrina, of course. so following up on rahm emanuel, he might have thought hurricanes generally play better for democrats in that they require that kind of federal aid. you cannot -- no state, no city can do this on this its own and that was what was poignant with governor christie and president obama. yeah, i think that's true. >> edmund, this was a case of leadership that is perhaps a little bit more like theodore roosevelt than ronald reagan in the sense whether it's christie
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or obama, seemed a take-charge attitude. >> appearance matters. they were masters of action on camera. and what the american people relate to, particularly during an election season, is the president in action. and here we've -- if i were running for re-election to the presidency, i would pray for an emergency like this, because we look to our presidents to dramatize and to make sense of natural catastrophes. theodore roosevelt had the san francisco earthquake to deal with which he greatly enjoyed and reagan had several great theatrical moments, the assassination attempt. >> the "challenger." >> yeah. >> so he was very good at articulating that. we want to see and hear our presidents articulating the way we feel. so i should think the president right now is a very happy man. >> do you think ronald reagan could get that republican nomination today?
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you know, on so many issues he would be considered somewhat moderate. he was in favor of gun control for example. >> reagan was running for presidency for the first time in the late 1960s. he was hampered with the fact that he was associated with extreme right wing causes. and for those who supported him, as he said of john birch society, he said, well, i welcome their support. just because they support me, i don't support them necessarily. reagan had the gift of putting over hard provocative policy statements with a sweetness and personal presentation and niceness about him that somehow diffused the hardness of these positions. if he had become president when he first ran in 1976, i think the world would have been a very dangerous place, because this nice guy was saying things and intending to do things to the soviet union, which probably
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would have brought on real international stress. history came to our rescue and delayed reagan's election until later time when he became more diplomatic. >> we're going to have to take a break. when we come back, we're going to talk with our panel about what this cliffhanger election reminds them of and who the candidates remind them of when we come back. ound my house. mine's just, right over that way. well you can find out exactly where it is using bing elections. it's a good day for politics. which way do you lean politically? conservative. republican. well, using the bing news selector you can find news from whichever way you lean. (together) social on this side, financial. which party is currently predicted to win a majority in the senate? the republicans? would you make a bet on that? no. are you chicken?
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in that time there've been some good days. and some difficult ones. but, through it all, we've persevered, supporting some of the biggest ideas in modern history. so why should our anniversary matter to you? because for 200 years, we've been helping ideas move from ambition to achievement. and the next great idea could be yours. ♪ but what about your wrinkles? neutrogena® rapid wrinkle repair visibly reduces fine lines and wrinkles in just one week. why wait if you don't have to. neutrogena®. ♪ [ male announcer ] introducing the all-new completely re-imagined 2013 chevrolet malibu. sleek new styling... sophisticated dual cockpit design,
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we are back with walter isaacson, sean wilentz, and edmund morris, our superstar history panel. sean wilentz, people look at this and say the race is tied. there are some indications that obama is ahead in the state-by-state polls so he could win the electoral college but could lose the popular vote. that happened, of course, in 2000. what are the historic parallels that you think of when you look at this election? >> in some ways there are no
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parallels because of structural politics. you have to go back to the 1850s. but we're talking about tight elections, there have been any number of them, 1800, 1824, neither of the presidential candidates got in the majority of the electoral college so it was sent to the house of representatives. 1960, i remember being a little kid staying up very, very late wondering who was going to win the election, kennedy or nixon. it came down in the end with illinois but it was a real cliff hanger. >> does it surprise people when it's a close election? >> sometimes. sometimes it tells you the opposite of what an election should tell you. for example, in 2,000, i think that 50/50 split was exactly 50/50 across the country. even the supreme court justices of florida and the united states put together, we're 50/50 divided between gore and bush. and what that election proved is we didn't want neither of them. i was a negative election.
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>> i think one of the interesting things tends to happen when you have a split election, when you have the white house and senate divided in certain parties, there has to be a coming to the center and some compromise. i think historically we've done that. the past four or five years have not been the best example of people saying, all right, we have a divided government, let's put together coalitions the way lyndon johnson could when he had really four parties, southern democrats, northern democrats, liberal republicans, conservative republicans and you could put together the coalitions. that's what's served the country well is the ability to put together coalitions. >> is it fair to say, yes, johnson was able to wheel and deal massively, but he did have democratic majorities in both the house and the senate? >> yeah, but that was -- i mean every president has different leadership styles. obviously we've all read robert
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kara's fourth volume now and the ability of lyndon johnson just to keep pulling people together and telling people, everett dirksen, because you did need some republican support when you were going up against richard russell was your democratic senator from the south to say to dirksen, i need your help on the bill and finally dirksen relents and then you say, but i need you to co-sponsor the bill and your name is going to come first and, you know, just doing that was a leadership style that johnson had, but john kennedy did not have. every president brings a certain aura to the leadership style, and in any given moment, you say, actually it would be nice if we could pull a little bit of that dna from that president and engrain it into the dnas of our current leaders in both the senate and white house. >> howard baker told me a great story about lbj and dirksen. he said when he was in an intern in dirksen's office, he heard
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him yelling into the phone, no, god damnit, mr. president, you're not getting those judges. and he slammed the phone down. howard baker said i'm leaving now, senator. dirksen said stick around, you're going to see something. and half an hour later, the door of dirksen's office flew open and in came two beagle hounds followed by the president of the united states with a bottle of bourbon and he slammed the bottle down on dirksen's desk and said, listen, you son-of-a-bitch, we're going to drink this bourbon, get those judgeships settled tonight. that's how he did business. >> you were not a supporter of obama during the primaries. you argued passionately. what do you think about him now historically? >> barack obama, he's done a pretty good job as president, i think. i mean, he got a historic health care bill through. no democratic president since
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fdr or senator bog wagner right through truman, right through clinton, put it back on the agenda. obama got it done. that's on the agenda. barack obama got it done. i'm not sure he handles things politically as a politician like he maybe should have, like lyndon johnson would have. but i give him good grades. i think clinton does an even better job, but i think he does fine. >> what about you? >> i think history will be kinder to president obama than the discussion we're having right now. you look back and we say, okay, we got health care, we got over the cliff of the horrible financial situation, the economy is going again, you know, osama bin laden, various things happened. so i think history will look back on a pretty successful, a
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very successful first term, and it's somewhat surprising that our political system right now sort of doesn't allow that narrative to emerge because we're so contentious these days. >> what do you think about that, edward? >> i've been disappointed through that cathartic, marvelous night he was elected. the biggest night i experienced was the election of richard nixon. he hasn't made a speech to compare since he was unleashed as a candidate. and i would have been happier if he spent less time playing golf with bankers. >> what do you think of mitt romney? who does he remind you of? >> he seems to be a novel which is periodically rewritten.
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i think behind the synthetic image is a really formidable and interesting man with a big heart, but it keeps getting hit by these images that his team wants him to project. where the real man is, i don't know. >> big heart, no backbone. he's moved way to the right to get the nomination. he will have a lot of problems governing if he gets elected. if he governs the way he's talking now, he'll have the right wing really angry with him. there will be hell to pay with his own party. if he governs the way the party wants him to, he'll have problems with the country because the country doesn't want a tea party government, that's pretty clear. >> thank you, all. when we come back, what happens if you give a tablet to an illiterate child? the results are incredible. safety surf on the internet
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as we look ahead to tuesday's election, here's our question of the week. there have been 18 republican presidents of the united states. how many democratic presidents have there been? is it a, 12, b 15, c 18 or d, 26? stay tuned and we'll tell you the correct answer. if you ever miss a show go to i tunes.com/fareed. you can get the audio podcast for free or you can buy the video version. this week's book of the week is "iron curtain" by ann appelbaum. this book looks at how communism spread across ancient europe in 1882. this is about how eastern europe
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became totalitarian. now for the last look. ethiopia has one of the highest illiteracy rates in the world. the village of wonchi is no exception. nobody there can read or write. that's why i was astonished when i saw what nicholas' one tablet for one child did there. he dropped a tablet for each child with no instructions. in four minutes, one boy had found the on/off switch. he then taught the others. within a few days, they were each using about 50 apps each per day. they were learning to write letters. and within a month, they were learning to speak them, too. not just the big ones. >> a, b, c, d, e, f, g. >> but the little ones, too.
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>> altogether now. >> a, b, c, d, e, f, g, h, i, jik. >> amazing. these people had never seen any letters, let alone speak them. now they're learning the alphabet song. it's a sign of great hope for 1 million children around the world who will never go to school. the correct answer to our gps challenge question was b. there have been 15 democratic presidents in the united states. actually, 16 presidencies and that's because grover had two terms. you'll notice 18 republican presidents plus 15 democratic